Interviewing the winning teams as they prepare for the big show in Huntington Beach
Jersey has a ton of spirit — and not just the kind they drink in that MTV show. For proof, look no further than Toms River East, winner of the 2010 Walk the Walk Eastern Bracket and finalists this August at the National Championships in Huntington Beach. With school out and the official countdown upon us, you can imagine Team Toms River is already going crazy with plans, strategy and preparation. We caught up with the team’s producer, Abbey Grasso, to find out just how crazy.—Chloe Barton
HURLEY.COM: YOUR SCHOOL DOMINATED THE FIRST THREE ROUNDS. WHAT ROLE DID YOU HAVE IN THE PRODUCTION OF THE VIDEOS?
ABBEY GRASSO: I was the marketing person for my team. I made sure that everyone at school knew about Hurley and everything that we were doing with WTW. I got everyone to go online and vote for our school. We had a lot of school support!
HOW HARD WAS IT TO PULL OFF THREE MAJOR VIDEO PRODUCTIONS?
For the first video, we just had to show who we are and what we are all about so that video didn’t take as much time as the other two. For the second one, we had to incorporate the Phantom and Low Rider shorts so we decided to put on a fashion show, which took a lot more planning. We needed people to design the clothes, people to make the clothes, people to set up the stage and run way, people to film, people to act as extras so it looked like an actual fashion show, and people to model in the fashion show. So, there were a lot of students involved doing all sorts of things.
SOUNDS LIKE YOU GOT EVERYONE INVOLVED.
Yeah, we had a bunch of groups working on the project. And then for the third video, we used our different “looks” from the fashion show to make a retail presentation in the window of the Pac Sun store. Then, we had to do a lot of marketing to make sure that all our friends and family attended our retail event. We really got the word out about WTW to the entire community during that challenge.
SO, THIS WAS ALSO A MAJOR EXERCISE IN MARKETING AND PROMOTION.
Definitely. I feel like before WTW a lot of older people, like my parents’ friends, didn’t know a lot about surf brands and now everyone knows about Hurley.
THAT’S AWESOME. BUT NOW COMES THE REAL CHALLENGE IN HUNTINGTON BEACH.
Yes, we are very excited! We have been meeting twice a week to get ready to come out.
WHAT KIND OF FINAL PREPARATIONS HAVE YOU GUYS BEEN DOING AT THESE MEETINGS?
We’ve been making the clothes and practicing for the actual event. We’ve been trying to get professional opinions so that we can make it the best possible when we get out to California. After we figured out how we wanted our music to sound during the performance, we met with someone who helped us make our music flow nicely. We met up with a make-up artist to get make-up tips and make sure that our make-up matches our clothes and theme. Also, we had someone come in to look at our outfits to make sure that our clothes looked like outfits that we would actually want to wear, rather than costumes.
WOW. PROFESSIONAL OPINIONS. SOUNDS SERIOUS.
It’s all about the group effort. The jobs each person has for this final competition are well suited and everyone is able to really shine because they are doing what they love. We can’t wait.
Check Toms River East’s winning videos here.